Edvard Munch created Der Kuss (The Kiss) in 1895, and shortly thereafter Christiana (now Oslo) officials decreed that the work was immoral and prohibited it from exhibition. For late 19th-century middle class audiences, the image proved scandalous. Yet for Munch and his bohemian circle, the print exemplified the artist's claim: "There should be no more paintings of people reading and women knitting. In the future they [art] should be of people who breathe, who feel emotions, who suffer and love." Munch depicted the passionate embrace of two nude lovers. He went far beyond formal courting scenes or even scenes of nudes in brothels found in the work of earlier artists. This masterpiece of expressionist art presents the pinnacle of physical and emotional tension.